It’s a dream for many people all over the world to publish their own book. The idea of seeing your name in print on the cover of a novel is exciting and rewarding. However, life often gets in the way and years after being in a rat race, the dream of being an author never materializes.
There are seniors all over the world who still nurture this dream of becoming a published author. The good news is that it’s easier now to make this dream come true than ever before.
There are many platforms for authors to self-publish their own books. There are websites like CreateSpace that even allow you to get them printed on demand.
No longer do you have to fork out large sums of money to a publishing company just to self-publish your novel. There’s no need for a print run and you’ll not have hundreds of books lying around your house with no one to buy them.
Things have changed for the better. Now that we’ve established that it’s easy to become a published author, let’s look at how you can go about it.
Tap into previous experience/existing knowledge
The first thing that you’ll need to decide on is what you’re going to write about. Very often, the choice is either fiction or non-fiction. If you have a flair for writing and love fiction, you can write the novel you’ve always wanted to.
If you have experience in investing, fishing, banking, writing, etc. you may wish to share your knowledge and experience with others in a non-fiction book. As a senior, you would most probably have worked at a job for years prior to retiring.
This is a wealth of experience that can be tapped into to create books for others. You’ll save time on research because the information is already at your fingertips.
One of the most popular places to sell digital books is the Amazon Kindle platform. There are thousands and thousands of books for sale here. Before even starting on your book, you should study the categories and niches in the Kindle marketplace.
This will give you an idea about how popular the niche is, what the competition is like and so on. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to write a book that people want to buy and you’ll not be drowned out by the competition either.
If you hate to write but you have a story to tell, you can always outsource the writing to a freelance writer on Upwork or any other freelancing platform where writers congregate. What’s important is that you ask for samples before hiring anyone.
Only pick writers who reply promptly and have good writing samples. You’ll get writers of different capabilities and talents replying to your requests. So, you’ll need to be stringent with your criteria and hire one that is reliable and talented.
Understand the platform
It’s imperative that you understand how the different platforms work. Spend a week or two just surfing on the Amazon Kindle store studying the structure of categories, the niches, the author descriptions, the popular books that are selling and so on.
It will take you a while to get a feel and understanding of the place. It’s akin to moving into a new neighborhood or starting a new job. It will take you a while to figure out the set up and get comfortable with the layout of the place.
The same applies to any online platform you use whether it’s CreateSpace, Upwork, Smashwords, etc.
Know your budget
Knowing your budget is important. You’ll either be writing the book yourself or paying someone to do it. You’ll either be creating the 2D cover image yourself or you’ll be hiring someone to do it.
The cover image is very important. If you’re not experienced with graphic design, you’re better off paying a professional to do it for you. You can find very competent designers for just five dollars on Fiverr.
Do not create a shoddy product cover. People DO judge a book by it’s cover. Trying to save a few dollars just may cost you thousands in the long run. Stepping over dollars to pick up pennies is never a good idea.
If you’re writing the book yourself, you may wish to hire an editor or a proofreader. If you’re outsourcing out everything from the writing to editing, always make sure you have enough funds to spare.
Do NOT go into debt just to sell your own books online. Make sure you’re only spending money that you can afford to spend. As a senior citizen, managing your finances is of utmost importance.
You’re better off saving till you have enough spare cash to self-publish (it’s not that expensive) rather than plunging in wildly and blowing a portion of your monthly living expenses on hiring a writer to write a book that might not sell.
There are self-published authors making six figures a month. You can be one of them… if you proceed cautiously and wisely. Go ahead and tell your story today.
“But when people say, Did you always want to be a writer? I have to say no! I always was a writer.” – Ursula Le Guin